Introduction to Civil 3D’s Grading Optimization Program: Webcast Q&A

December 14, 2021 Jeff Morris

I thank everyone for attending my webcast on December 9th, 2021, where I introduced the Grading Optimization for Civil 3D. The timing of the webcast was opportune to introduce ASCENT’s latest courseware on the Grading Optimization program to be released December 20th, 2021.

If you missed the live webcast, you can view the on-demand recording here.

The webcast covered the following topics:

  • The Concept
  • The Civil 3D Interface
  • The Grading Optimization Interface
  • Back to Civil 3D

We looked at the interface for the Grading Optimization within Civil 3D, then the interface within the Grading Optimization program. Finally, we studied the process of bringing the Grading Optimization results back to Civil 3D. Following that, I demonstrated the whole round-trip process with a software demonstration.

Below are some questions that came up during the webcast:

Q: Can the grading optimization consider cut/fill factors??

A: Yes, in the grading optimization options can you prioritize focusing on Earthworks and also enter the desired net volume needed to be met.


Q: Can the optimization tool consider the removal of topsoil in fill areas to achieve subgrade for earthwork calculations?

A: Yes, in many of the Grading Object properties you can enter the Depth of Material for the grubbing surface.


Q: How long is that ASCENT book/class? ­

A: It is designed as a 1 day (8 hour) learning guide. It is considered a complement to the 2 day Civil 3D Fundamentals for Land Developers guide, although this is not a pre-requisite.


Q: Would this be a good tool for ADA Ramp Design?

A: Yes, there is a specialized Zone Grading Object on the Grading Object tool palette named Accessible Path which has the recommended values for ADA ramps pre-set.


Q:  Does the grading optimization create additional feature lines that were not put in as part of the setup process?

A: No. All the Grading Objects defined within Civil 3D can be returned as feature lines to Civil 3D, however no new feature lines will be created.


Q: Is the Grading Optimization tool included as a free add-on to C3D 2022.

A: Only if you have the AEC Collections 2022.


Q: How does the optimizer handle reveals and retaining walls, as 2.5D TIN objects or as true vertical 3d faces?

A: Yes, as 2.5 TIN objects.


Q: I assume the grading optimization does not produce civil 3d grading objects, only feature lines and points.

A: Yes, that is correct.


About the Author

Jeff Morris

Learning Content Developer<br><br>Jeff specializes in infrastructure tools such as Civil 3D and Infraworks, delivering training classes and contributing to the learning guides for these Autodesk software applications. Jeff has worked for several Autodesk resellers and has had roles of both CAD and BIM Manager with Civil and Architectural firms.

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